World Trip HomePost Eight

Post Eight - Visitors


Company. It's a wonderful word, especially when you're lonely. Our friend DeEtte joined us for a few days, and then Dave and Michelle came down from Amsterdam to check out Sevilla, Gibraltar, and Morocco.

First, Sevilla. That meant tapas, Rioja, olives, Cabrales, and sherry. One night after dinner, we sipped fino and played "Spin Your Favorite Tune" with Christin's ample and eclectic CD collection. Midway through the evening, Scott set up the camera and snapped a few photos. We decided that if we ever decided to form a band, this would be the debut album's cover shot. -- Karen


While David and Michelle were with us I decided to try making Sangria. The recipe books in Christin's apartment said to use plenty of fruit, a touch of cinnamon, cheap red wine, and lemon seltzer. Then you let it steep in the fridge for an hour or two before you serve it. My version worked out well but next time I'll use better wine. In southern Spain, a decent bottle of wine costs around five dollars. For my sangria, I followed the instructions and bought the Spanish equivalent of box wine at about $0.50 per liter. Next time I'll spring for the good stuff.

After we killed the sangria, Dave and I just about killed a bottle of Spanish brandy, but that's another story. -- Scott

Michelle, Ma Belle..."Michelle, Ma Belle..."

It didn't take long to realize that Michelle doesn't like to have her picture taken. But she looked so lovely in this light, both Dave and I insisted on taking a photo. I got her just as she was smiling for Dave. -- Karen

Moorish CourtyardMoorish Courtyard

At various times, Sevilla was ruled by Romans, Vandals, Visigoths, and Moors. Each group left behind some of its people, and each helped to shape Spanish culture.

Among other things, the Moors left their architecture, as you can see here in one of the many beautiful rooms in Sevilla's Alcázar, a royal palace built by the Moors in 1181. When the Moors ruled Spain, their nobility brought their craftsmen north to build them gorgeous palaces that reminded them of their homeland. The delicately carved and painted stonework and intensely colored, glazed tiles are mesmerizing in their intricacy and variety. The glorious, high-ceilinged rooms are still, cool, and peaceful. Open courtyards adorned in the center by a single fountain brim with Andalusian light. -- Karen

Moorish KaleidoscopeMoorish Kaleidoscope

This amazing ceiling was the lining of a dome in a Moorish-era hacienda. I just couldn't get over the intricacies of the Moorish style - it must have been incredibly labor intensive. -- Scott

Staircase of Sevillano TilesStaircase of Sevillano Tiles

Having been on the road for eight months, it was luxurious to be in one place and take a rest from day-to-day travel. It was such a treat not to eat in restaurants, to cook our own food in a real kitchen, to know where the next load of laundry was going to be done.

It was also nice to get to know the town, and we tried to see as many local sites as possible, such as this historic home-cum-museum just a couple of blocks from our apartment. This is a staircase covered in the tiles for which Sevilla is famous. -- Karen


This cistern, underneath the Alcazar in Sevilla, was cool and damp in marked contrast to the 100+ degree heat above. I could imagine the royalty coming down here during the summers to bathe and cool themselves off. The pool was full of coins people have been throwing in over the years. Down one of the side halls, water poured into the pool sounding like a distant waterfall. -- Scott

Next Up: Gibraltar & Morocco

Copyright 2001
Scott & Karen Semyan